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Author Topic: 85 1.8 vs Zeiss 85 1.4  (Read 2288 times)

friedrice1212

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85 1.8 vs Zeiss 85 1.4
« on: October 22, 2012, 10:34:17 AM »
I recently tried the Zeiss 85mm f/1.4 manual focus lens, and I must say, it is stunningly unique. Unfortunately, I would have liked to compare that lens to the EF 85mm 1.8, but none of the rental places in my area seem to have it (they only have the 85L apparently...  :o ). So I was just wondering is more than double the price and the lack of autofocus really justify the nice bokeh and IQ of the Zeiss? What are your experiences with the Canon? And if I'm into mid-tele portraiture, is there any other lens (preferably under 1k) that I should consider? I shoot a 5D2.

Thanks!

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85 1.8 vs Zeiss 85 1.4
« on: October 22, 2012, 10:34:17 AM »

Nishi Drew

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Re: 85 1.8 vs Zeiss 85 1.4
« Reply #1 on: October 22, 2012, 11:00:49 AM »
Sigma 85 1.4 is excellent from all I read, I'd get it but the 70-200 has the FL taken care of now.
The Sigma gets compared to the 85L for bokeh, it's sharp, and CA is way better controlled over the 85 1.8, also has HSM (Sigs USM) which is faster than the 85L but about as fast as the 85 1.8.

If manual focus is your thing, or you don't mind then go for the Zeiss though, especially when the 5DII doesn't have the best AF out there  :P

chas1113

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Re: 85 1.8 vs Zeiss 85 1.4
« Reply #2 on: October 22, 2012, 04:57:19 PM »
If you really liked the rendering of the Zeiss, (and didn't mind the manual focus), there are a couple offbeat 85mm options for well under a grand. My solution was to get a used Contax CY 85mm 1.4 MMJ for under $600. The OOF background blur at f/2 is remarkable in its artistry. Many people prefer the CY to the ZE rendering (and for the price difference). Another option on the cheap is the Samyang 85mm 1.4. My Contax has focus confirmation via adapter; I believe the Samyang/Rockinon/etc. needs a chip glued to it to focus confirm. Another solid option is the EF 100mm f/2.8 L IS. I traded up from the USM version and my two versions are like night and day in terms of saturation and bokeh. The IS helps for hand-held portraiture. Just take one step backward and you're at 85mm equivalent FOV. If I need AF and IS I grab the macro; otherwise the Contax is first choice. The rendering wide open is very dreamy with some purple fringing, but that can be fixed in post.
« Last Edit: October 22, 2012, 05:08:49 PM by chas1113 »
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wickidwombat

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Re: 85 1.8 vs Zeiss 85 1.4
« Reply #3 on: October 22, 2012, 06:31:39 PM »
I recently tried the Zeiss 85mm f/1.4 manual focus lens, and I must say, it is stunningly unique. Unfortunately, I would have liked to compare that lens to the EF 85mm 1.8, but none of the rental places in my area seem to have it (they only have the 85L apparently...  :o ). So I was just wondering is more than double the price and the lack of autofocus really justify the nice bokeh and IQ of the Zeiss? What are your experiences with the Canon? And if I'm into mid-tele portraiture, is there any other lens (preferably under 1k) that I should consider? I shoot a 5D2.

Thanks!

sigma 85 f1.4 between $800 and $900
imo bokeh is nicer than the zeiss AF is faster than the 85 f1.2L from canon especially noticable on a 5D
and build is very very good
just be aware they can be off on focus out of the box I sent mine back to sigma to be recalibrated but now its bang on accurate, its not a big deal its just a software calibration.
the lens is far better than the review on the digital picture makes out
there is a bit of CA at f1.4 but lightroom can wipe this out in a second but CA is pretty much gone by f2 and f2
is wicked sharp
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Re: 85 1.8 vs Zeiss 85 1.4
« Reply #4 on: October 22, 2012, 07:27:33 PM »
I recently tried the Zeiss 85mm f/1.4 manual focus lens, and I must say, it is stunningly unique. Unfortunately, I would have liked to compare that lens to the EF 85mm 1.8, but none of the rental places in my area seem to have it (they only have the 85L apparently...  :o ). So I was just wondering is more than double the price and the lack of autofocus really justify the nice bokeh and IQ of the Zeiss? What are your experiences with the Canon? And if I'm into mid-tele portraiture, is there any other lens (preferably under 1k) that I should consider? I shoot a 5D2.

Thanks!
The Canon 85mm f/1.8 is very good, and a bargain for the price.  Only you know if you can do without autofocus. (I can't).    The 100mm f/2 is another to consider, it really depends on the working distance available.

friedrice1212

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Re: 85 1.8 vs Zeiss 85 1.4
« Reply #5 on: October 22, 2012, 07:50:37 PM »
Thanks guys! One of my local stores offer 14-day satisfaction guarantee so, I will probably pull the trigger on the cheaper 85mm 1.8 first, then if I don't like it, get the sigma. Somehow, I'm pretty certain I'll like it though. Screw the bad reviews about CA. There are always more people saying bad things about things on the Internet than ones that say good things!

wickidwombat

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Re: 85 1.8 vs Zeiss 85 1.4
« Reply #6 on: October 22, 2012, 07:55:12 PM »
Thanks guys! One of my local stores offer 14-day satisfaction guarantee so, I will probably pull the trigger on the cheaper 85mm 1.8 first, then if I don't like it, get the sigma. Somehow, I'm pretty certain I'll like it though. Screw the bad reviews about CA. There are always more people saying bad things about things on the Internet than ones that say good things!

CA is almost a complete non issue in the new lightroom anyway
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Re: 85 1.8 vs Zeiss 85 1.4
« Reply #6 on: October 22, 2012, 07:55:12 PM »

Menace

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Re: 85 1.8 vs Zeiss 85 1.4
« Reply #7 on: October 23, 2012, 06:24:45 PM »
Thanks guys! One of my local stores offer 14-day satisfaction guarantee so, I will probably pull the trigger on the cheaper 85mm 1.8 first, then if I don't like it, get the sigma. Somehow, I'm pretty certain I'll like it though. Screw the bad reviews about CA. There are always more people saying bad things about things on the Internet than ones that say good things!

Go for it - you'll be very pleased with it. Also, 14 days satisfaction guarantee is a real bonus  :)
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Re: 85 1.8 vs Zeiss 85 1.4
« Reply #7 on: October 23, 2012, 06:24:45 PM »